Oracle audits – can you ever be prepared for a software audit?
Any organization that is using software knows that there will come a time when they will have to have that software checked. Is it used as it’s supposed to? Does it have the right licenses? Who is actually using it? These are just some questions that you’ll hear when you’ll be under software audit. And it doesn’t really matter who’s the vendor. However, Oracle is known as the one of the most active and aggressive when it comes to audits. So, let’s have a look at what you need to know in order to go through an Oracle audit smoothly.
What might trigger an Oracle audit?
Some companies are under the impression that because (they think) they have everything in order, they will not have to go through a software audit. To their disappointment, the Oracle audit team is also targeting them. Why? Firstly, because Oracle wants to check that they really have everything in order. And even if that is the case, an Oracle audit is never a walk in the park. Secondly, there are some events that can trigger an audit. It can be that your company grew in number of employees, it merged with another or acquired a new company. It can also be an agreement expiration, the termination of support maintenance or changes in the infrastructure. Lastly, it can be just Oracle’s need to push for more sales at the end of a quarter or the fiscal year. And what’s an easy way to make money? Exactly, a software audit.
When is a good time to start preparing?
Any time is a good time to start preparing for an Oracle audit. We recommend our customers to always be ready to receive the dreaded letter. This doesn’t mean to live in panic, but exactly the opposite: to avoid it when the actual letter arrives. However, even if you didn’t get the chance to prepare in advance, the battle is not yet lost and the damage can still be minimized if you have the right support.
Have your documents in order
The first thing you can do when you buy Oracle software is store and keep track of all the documents you receive with the software. This way, when Oracle will start an audit at your company, you’ll know exactly where to go to prove your compliance position. This is helpful not only in case of an audit, but also to have a good overview of the software programs you have within your company and to help you avoid buying unnecessary ones.
Know your software deployment
Having your entitlements overview is the basis of getting to know your compliance position. However, it doesn’t stop there, as during an Oracle audit the vendor will also look at your software deployment. Therefore, you should know what software is being deployed and used, as well as how and who is using it. If you have a small company, it might be tempting to say that it’s easy to know who is using what – the IT manager knows it. But is that really the case? Most probably not. If we’re talking about a large organization, then it’s out of question that you expect one person to remember what is used and to report that during an Oracle audit. Our advice? Keep track of everything from the first moment you purchase the software.
I know my entitlements and deployments, now what?
If you have a good overview of both your entitlement and deployments, good job. You’re probably one of the few companies that actually know what software is being purchased and used by its employees. The next step would be to see if your entitlements and deployments match. Is the software installed on the finance department computers matching the licenses in your overview? More often than not, during an Oracle audit, companies find out that they either have too many or not enough licenses.
You can always ask for help
Managing the Oracle programs and their associated licenses is sometimes underestimated by many companies. Generally, asking for help is considered only when they are under audit from Oracle. As the saying goes “Better late than never”. But you don’t need to wait for Oracle to start an audit to have someone supporting you with your software asset management.
If you want to assess your software compliance position before an Oracle audit or if you’re already under audit, give us a call. Our specialists will get in touch with you and plan the best way to go through and out the Oracle audit.